At Pantiacolla we share an immense respect and appreciation for the rainforest. The rainforests of the world are an important source of biodiversity and climatic stability. Unfortunately, within the last 100 years, the rainforest coverage on Earth has been reduced by nearly half. Every single hour, the Amazon basin alone is losing approximately 5 km² of rainforest. Still, Pantiacolla believes there is time to turn this destruction around by changing to a sustainable world view and lifestyle.
MAIN GOAL: EDUCATIONAL TOURISM
Pantiacolla was set up to educate tourists and students about the complicated ecosystem of the Amazon rainforest. This education will raise awareness and understanding about the importance of conserving the rainforest.
RESEARCH AND CONSERVATIONAs a natural consequence of our wish to stop rainforest destruction through education, Pantiacolla also initiates and supports research and conservation projects, both in the reserved zone and in the cultural zone of Manu. In the past, our projects focused on primate ecology (Monk Saki research) and the macaw dynamics at clay licks. Our present student projects include tree species reforestation in Pantiacolla Lodge.
INDIGENOUS AMAZON PEOPLES
Nevertheless, during Pantiacolla’s beginning years, it became clear that the rainforest can only have a chance of survival if the people who live in there, can continue to do so in a sustainable way. In the past, indigenous people have established ingenious techniques to survive, embedded in a specific world vision that enabled not only their long-term survival, but necessarily also that of the rainforest. It is sad to have to say that all outside influence, from the missionaries up to the present-day mining and oil exploiters, has only deteriorated the traditional sustainable relationship that existed between indigenous people and their rainforest. Pantiacolla is determined in being instrumental to find solutions for all involved, indigenous people and outsiders alike, to assure the survival of the Amazon rainforest.
Our determination has led to several projects. In 2000 we started with the far-reaching Yine Project in Manu´s Diamante Native Community. Pantiacolla built the Yine Lodge and designed a 3-day tourism circuit. The lodge was meant to be used as a “school environment” for the Yine to have a place to learn and practice their abilities in eco-tourism, while the 3-day circuit gave the Yine the opportunity to teach and share their knowledge and skills with their tourist visitors. Due to Pantiacolla’s long-term commitment, many essential differences between the western and the indigenous world views have come to light, and the Yine and Pantiacolla together have worked to find satisfying and sustainable solutions. In April of 2015, the Yine Lodge was handed over to the Yine community, in accordance with the initial agreement.
Oil Exploitation & Harakmbut
In 2009, the initiation of oil exploration by Hunt Oil Company in the reserve east of Manu, the Amarakaeri Indigenous Reserve, has led to the cooperation of some Harakmbut families of the Shintuya Community in Pantiacolla’s ecotourism programme, as a sustainable alternative for the economical offers of the oil company. The Harakmbut have a space of a couple of hours in some of Pantiacolla’s tours to show their magical dances, songs, stories and other techniques that helped them to survive for many centuries in the Amazon.